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Blake Noble

Instrument Cluster ID

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Browsing YouTube, I stumbled across a walkaround video of an '84 Monte SS with a 'Vette 355/6-speed manual setup. I noticed that this Monte's instrument cluster was not the stock Monte SS cluster.

Here is a link to the video:

This is the stock Monte SS instrument cluster:

DashLight_4.jpg

This is the modified cluster:

0montessinstrumentmod.jpg

Notice how the rev counter is mounted on the left side in the modified cluster and stock cluster has the rev counter mounted in the right side? Also, the needles on the modified cluster point due south.

I've been searching '80s era GM cars and haven't been able to make a match. I hope, though, that this instrument cluster is more common and doesn't take a lot of modification to retrofit.

If someone can help me out on what they think this instrument cluster came out of, I'd appreciate it a lot.

Edited by whiteknight
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My 1994 GMC Sonoma had a speedometer and tach that both started at the bottom of the cluster like that...GM changed it in 1995 when they eliminated the "old style" steering column. The yellow pointers say "Sonoma/S10" to me...whereas the gauges in the center have white pointers...mix and match cluster.

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I change my vote, speedo started at the bottom, tach did not in 1994.

However, an 1989 Firebird/Trans Am had both the tach and speedo start at the bottom, with yellow pointers. I'll assume it's more than just '89s that had those gauges.

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If all else fails you could always post a comment to the user on youtube.

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Yup, I was going to suggest that, but it looks like he did already.
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However, an 1989 Firebird/Trans Am had both the tach and speedo start at the bottom, with yellow pointers. I'll assume it's more than just '89s that had those gauges.

BigPontiac was right. The owner of the steel blue Monte posted a comment back and he said it came out of an '89 Trans Am GTA. He also said the tach and speedo locations were reversed. I can live without that particular mod, but I'm going to investigate it.

Here's the good thing: I know where quite a few F-Bodies are at, 2/4ths of them '80s-era and not to be crushed for a little while now. I'm going to do a little more research into that particular cluster's commonality (i.e. if lesser Firebird's had them) and pick one up.

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BigPontiac was right. The owner of the steel blue Monte posted a comment back and he said it came out of an '89 Trans Am GTA. He also said the tach and speedo locations were reversed. I can live without that particular mod, but I'm going to investigate it.

Here's the good thing: I know where quite a few F-Bodies are at, 2/4ths of them '80s-era and not to be crushed for a little while now. I'm going to do a little more research into that particular cluster's commonality (i.e. if lesser Firebird's had them) and pick one up.

Likely you need to stay out of the '90s... the '91 and '92 have a different cluster... four big circles... speedo and tach... then the four other gauges... gas, volt, oil, temp split the other two circles... this likely happened during the late '90 refresh.

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Likely you need to stay out of the '90s... the '91 and '92 have a different cluster... four big circles... speedo and tach... then the four other gauges... gas, volt, oil, temp split the other two circles... this likely happened during the late '90 refresh.

'89s were the same way. As long as they have the same diameter, will fit into the stock openings, and the tach uses two studs mounted to the back and is wired in a similar fashion, I'll be in good shape.

I tracked down a Monte parts car in Mount Vernon for the interior trim and center cluster (gas, volts, etc.). I'm going to check that out tomorrow.

Edited by whiteknight
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'89s were the same way. As long as they have the same diameter, will fit into the stock openings, and the tach uses two studs mounted to the back and is wired in a similar fashion, I'll be in good shape.

Oh... you are just talking about just the gauges... I thought the whole cluster was swapped. That explains why I didn't recognize it as a F-body cluster.

Yeah, those should be real common. If I was planning a trip to the Pick-a-Part, I'd keep an eye open... they had a couple 3rd gen F-bods in there.

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Something I didn't realize earlier: there isn't anything to indicate what gear you are in on that modified cluster.

This is where I'm going to get creative. I was planning to do a 3rd-gen Camaro center console swap eventually, so that I could relocate the parking brake, since that needs to be fixed anyway. The 3rd-gen Camaro console would also maintain a factory appearance. Why not do this now? I wonder if the console in automatic 3rd-gen Camaros had gear indication or if it was placed elsewhere?

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Something I didn't realize earlier: there isn't anything to indicate what gear you are in on that modified cluster.

This is where I'm going to get creative. I was planning to do a 3rd-gen Camaro center console swap eventually, so that I could relocate the parking brake, since that needs to be fixed anyway. The 3rd-gen Camaro console would also maintain a factory appearance. Why not do this now? I wonder if the console in automatic 3rd-gen Camaros had gear indication or if it was placed elsewhere?

Yep... on the console just next to the shifter, IIRC.

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Well maybe I don't need a new speedo and tach after all.

I found the temp/fuel/volts/oil center gauges out of a '84 Cutlass Supreme Calais today, used their needles on my gauges since it turns out they are different after all, and hooked everything back up just for fun. I tested the new instrument lighting not only to find out only one bulb is getting voltage and illuminating, but that my tach jumps up about 500 more rpms and my usually dead temp gauge springs back to life and reads 200 degrees. My fuel, volt, and oil gauges, which normally work fine, just die.

Maybe it's a bad dimmer switch?

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Well maybe I don't need a new speedo and tach after all.

I found the temp/fuel/volts/oil center gauges out of a '84 Cutlass Supreme Calais today, used their needles on my gauges since it turns out they are different after all, and hooked everything back up just for fun. I tested the new instrument lighting not only to find out only one bulb is getting voltage and illuminating, but that my tach jumps up about 500 more rpms and my usually dead temp gauge springs back to life and reads 200 degrees. My fuel, volt, and oil gauges, which normally work fine, just die.

Maybe it's a bad dimmer switch?

Anyone have any thoughts on this? I'm getting stumped. It has to be either a bad dimmer switch or, god forbid, a bad printed circuit on the back of the cluster.

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I was thinking printed circuit...

Wonderful ... just wonderful.

I just love '80s electrical systems, let me tell you. Especially the ones they stuck in G-Bodies.

Well, luckily I might have a car on the way to pick clean for parts. I made a call earlier and a guy in Richmond has a junkyard with an '83 Monte incoming. He also has a '78 I'm going to check out tomorrow, just in case there is something from it I can use, although it does not have a instrument cluster. My fingers are crossed that the '83 has a blue interior ... and that it's an SS as well, but that's probably asking for wayyyy too much.

Edited by whiteknight
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Make sure to rule out the ground circuit they are most likely the prob

It does sound like bad grounding.

Does the printed circuit have the bulbs stuck into it?

If so, pull them all and check the contacts, I remember one of my old trucks having a problem there.

Edited by Camino LS6
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It does sound like bad grounding.

Does the printed circuit have the bulbs stuck into it?

If so, pull them all and check the contacts, I remember one of my old trucks having a problem there.

Yep. The bulb sockets have two contact points that make contact with the printed circuit on the back of the cluster. The right turn signal bulb socket actually popped out today when I was replacing all of the bulbs (I should mention that it never worked though, not even after replacing the bulb and before it popped out).

Edited by whiteknight
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Browsing YouTube, I stumbled across a walkaround video of an '84 Monte SS with a 'Vette 355/6-speed manual setup. I noticed that this Monte's instrument cluster was not the stock Monte SS cluster.

Here is a link to the video:

Well, shoot.

That particular Monte Carlo, whiteknight, has quite the history with many of us on MCSS and on the MC Mailing List.

As I recall, that car started out in the hands of Crazy Bill in New Mexico. I met him during my 2004 road trip out west. He has since died.

Crazy Bill sold the car to Henry on the east coast, who drove it to one of the Monte Carlo Nationals. He then sold it to another MCMLer in the Atlanta area ... the same guy who owned the '82 Chevette diesel....

http://www.chevyasylum.com/cort/200711/RT1..._JohnC_JPG.html

I believe John has either sold it ... or has it up for sale. I'm not sure what the status is....

Small world.....

Cort | 35swm | "Mr Monte Carlo"."Mr Road Trip" | pig valve.pacemaker ...RT 66 = Sept 5-16, '09

WRMNshowcase.legos.HO.models.MCs.RTs.CHD = http://www.chevyasylum.com/cort

"There's no better time than today" ... 9 Days ... 'Good Friend'

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